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Nhs Trusts (Cost Improvement Programmes)

Volume 281: debated on Tuesday 16 July 1996

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To ask the Secretary of State for Health when he last met chief executives of health trusts to discuss the current cost improvement programmes. [35793]

The regional offices of the NHS executive consider the plans of each trust on my behalf, including efficiency gains negotiated with them.

When the Secretary of State next meets Mr. Keith Parsons, the part-time chief executive of Royal Liverpool and Broadgreen University Hospitals NHS trust, will he ask him to explain to the people of Liverpool how he is able to charter an airplane to bring him from a medical conference in Edinburgh to attend the last board meeting of the trust, and then to take him back again, while he is seeking to close four wards in Broadgreen hospital in my constituency, two of which are proving impossible to close because of so-called "over-activity"—in other words, too many orthopaedic geriatric patients who desperately need the services that those wards provide?

What I will do if I meet this gentleman is congratulate him on the fact that his hospital was the first hospital in the NHS to declare that it had no people on its waiting list waiting for more than 12 months. We might have heard that from the hon. Lady when commenting on the affairs of her constituency.